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Packaging Social Media

Posted January 06, 2011 8:30 AM by Steve Melito

"The packaging community has been slow to embrace social media," explains JoAnn Hines, "but any company that plans to be successful with new product introductions must engage in social media". A self-described "packaging diva", Hines is a leading packaging consultant and LinkedIn power user whose Packaging News You Can Use newsletter has helped her land two invitations to the White House and a television appearance on NBC.

"Social media is a growing opportunity for you," Hines noted during a recent address to the Sustainable Plastics 2010 conference in Atlanta. Companies that "connect with the consumer" can gain valuable business intelligence about buyer preferences and attitudes, especially with regard to sustainable packaging. But social media requires more than just "talking about how wonderful you are". Since "stories" spread so rapidly via Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, packagers need to listen before it's too late.

Just ask Frito-Lay, which has stopped using compostable bags made from a plant-based resin. Just six months after repackaging its popular line of SunChips snacks, the company was forced to dump the sustainable packaging from all but its SunChips original packages. As consumers complained via social media, the new bags were too noisy and didn't decompose as quickly as expected. "Social media loves bad stories," Hines explains, "and that floods out what one good package did."

How would your company react to bad buzz about one of its products?

Sources: Plastics News and Packaging Diva


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Re: Packaging Social Media

01/07/2011 9:12 PM

We were having a discussion of the use of Social Media as a marketing tool at my (small) company today. The young people were saying that thousands of people are zipping round the net with their portable electronics and that it would be a valuable marketing connection. The boss attended a class in November that discussed strategies for using google and facebook and twitter to market. I'm not a big social media fan at this point as I find them huge time drains when I don't have enough time to do the things I want and need to do already. Also we are stretched tight with manpower, and there aren't any real guru's or communications people to operate and maintain a website, let alone social media... pertinent to a marketing effort... so how are we supposed to do this on such a shoestring?

money is tight... can't hire extra people just to do this? any thoughts? What if you don't connect with customers? We sell custom high end kitchen cabinets, largely through word-of-mouth... I don't see social media helping much...

but I'm relatively uninformed.


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Re: Packaging Social Media

01/08/2011 1:30 AM

I don't get this. Why should packaging, fruit picking, or building design have any greater or lesser usage for social media than physics research, auto mechanics, or kindergarten teaching? This topic is total make-believe. Just don't squeeze the Charmin....

In vino veritas; in cervisia carmen; in aqua E. coli.
Anonymous Poster

Re: Packaging Social Media

01/08/2011 1:32 AM

And don't blame Desenex, either.

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